There are hundreds of students from Tijuana who get up around 4a.m. Monday to Friday, and are at the San Ysidro border by 5a.m. waiting to cross into San Diego hoping that the wait will not be too long, so that they can arrive on time to their classrooms. Fortunately for these students, missing half of their first class in the morning will no longer be a problem due to this pilot program that the Ministry of Public Safety of Tijuana in cooperation with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection has started.
This new exclusive pedestrian line was launched on Thursday April 18 with the support of U.S. Customs and Border Protection.
The dynamic in this new procedure is simple. Students now have their own line right next to the regular pedestrian line, but before crossing the gate into the United States, students must ask permission to the individuals in the regular line so that they can go up before them.
"The idea was to find ways in which young people who go to school in San Diego do not continue running late," said Luis Ignacio Flores Loa.
Flores is an officer from the Tijuana municipal police department, who for the past few weeks has been assigned the task of maintaining order at the pedestrian gate from Tijuana into the U.S.
"We received complaints from citizens who regularly cross on foot into the U.S, which they told us that in order for students to not be late to school, they would cut in line. And that is what has caused everyone else to get angry."
Previously, the complaint by citizens of the students is not that they were trying avoiding the pedestrian lines, but instead of what several have called "a lack of consideration" from these young people.
"This is how we came to the conclusion that if people do not mind for these students to cut in line, so they would not struggle to arrive to school on time, then they deserved to have a unique row and no longer have the excuse for missing class due to the long lines," said Flores.
The statistics and a detailed report of the results of this pilot program is still being worked on, however, the feedback from citizens who cross the border on a regular basis has been positive.
This is good news for the students from this border town, who could also now get more sleep in order to perform a lot better in school.
binomio (1 +4) Frontera digital, is an electronic journal from the Tijuana-San Diego region and addresses political, social, economic and cultural issues.